'a silver thread in a ribbon of green'

flowing through Edinburgh

The Water of Leith Conservation Trust works to conserve and enhance the river, its heritage and wildlife: the Trust promotes education and recreation through the Visitor Centre and works with volunteers and community groups to deliver around 240 river clean-ups and habitat improvement tasks annually. 

Operating since 1988, it was the first river charity to be established in Scotland. Support our work by becoming a member, sending a donation or joining the hundred-strong team of volunteers who are involved in projects on the river and in running the Visitor Centre.   

The Trust is a registered Charity (number SC000015). Our work is supported by City of Edinburgh Council’s Services for Communities and Children and Families Departments.

COVID Update

Our Centre Café is now open for Sit in and Takeaways every day 10.00am to 4.00pm. 

The Walkway

13 mile walkway winding through our capital

Visitor Centre

Open daily 10am to 4pm, community café & exhibition

The River

Edinburgh’s hidden natural asset

The Trust

Conserving and enhancing the river since 1988


Join the team and help protect the Water of Leith


Discover more on one of our learning programmes or activities

Featured Events

Sun 17th Oct

The Slateford Saunter – Guided Walk

Discover the hidden history of the area and learn how it played its part in our city’s history
11am to 1pm

Tue 19th Oct

Winter Survival Skills

Build a shelter, forage for food and learn to create fire in the toughest season of all
14:00 – 16:00

Thu 21st Oct

River Life

Join us in the water for a voyage of discovery.
2pm - 4pm

Mon 22nd Nov

The Eel – A Forgotten Fish

Members Evening and Talk
7.30pm to 9.00pm
Free for Members - £5 non

Sun 12th Dec

Mills, Spills and Thrills

Currie, Juniper Green and Colinton are united by the river and their milling heritage
11am to 1pm
£7 - or Free for Members with code

Mon 24th Jan


Members Evening and Talk – a journey through history celebrating bridge-building
7.30pm to 9.00pm
Free to Member - £5 non

Latest News & Blog Posts


Spongilla lacustris – SPONGES

Not quite enough to wash with but this amazing ‘animal’ was spotted by botanically minded volunteer Kate while wading for …

Coalie illustration

Coalie Park Improvement Project gathers pace

With some seed funding from the National Lottery and the formation of the ‘Coalie Collective’, plans to improve this rather …


Marvelous Meadows

Our marvelous Meadows along the Water of Leith are full of life. This week volunteers removed invasive Himalayan Balsam & …

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